Bayou Maharajah: The Tragic Genius Of James Booker
This film is not currently showing in cinemas.
Bayou Maharajah explores the life and music of New Orleans piano legend James Booker, the man Dr. John described as “the best black, gay, one-eyed junkie piano genius New Orleans has ever produced.”
A brilliant pianist, his eccentricities and showmanship belied a life of struggle, prejudice, and isolation. A wild genius with a style that combined elements of rhythm-and-blues, jazz, ragtime and classical music, he gained the nicknames "Piano Prince of New Orleans", "Black Liberace" and "Bayou Maharajah". Illustrated with never-before-seen concert footage, rare personal photos and exclusive interviews, the film paints a portrait of this overlooked genius.
“This winning doc features a can’t-‐miss subject and plenty of performance footage… A must-‐see for aficionados of *New Orleans jazz, it’s also accessible to viewers who don’t know a Professor Longhair from a Dr. John.”*
“In a city bulging with musicians who deserve or have appropriated the title ‘genius’, James Booker, the Piano Prince *of New Orleans, Ambassador of the Ivories, the Black Liberace, clearly had the talent to merit the garland, his style *a wondrous collision of dazzling classical technique, blues feeling and jazz improvisation rooted in stride, ragtime *and boogie woogie.”*
“For those who only know of the New Orleans rhythm and blues piano tradition through the likes of Fats Domino *and Professor Longhair, Booker's playing may come as a revelation. Melding blues, jazz and classical, it pays *scant regard to the traditional rules of song or composition.”
Director: Lily Keber
Run time: 90 mins
Text supplied by third party.
Tell us more about this listing.